Since the days of Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Junior and Dean Martin ripping up the strip in Las Vegas, Hollywood’s great and good have had a love affair with casinos. Perhaps it is that sense of style and sophistication, brought about by the James Bonds and Danny Oceans of the silver screen that is the attraction – or maybe they just love to live dangerously.
Whatever the reason, the lure of the bright lights and gaming tables is one that today’s stars find it as hard to turn down as ever. In this modern age of smartphones, you might think they would have the sense to simply visit an online casino
and steer well clear of trouble and out of sight of the paparazzi. Of course, that would give the tabloids and the glossy mags very little to talk about. Here are the latest names to fall under that peculiar spell. Ben Affleck kicked out for being too good
One of the most compelling games in a casino is blackjack, simply because it can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be. A child of five can get to grips with the rules in minutes, but at the same time, there are strategies that can have mathematicians and statisticians arguing for days on end.
Essentially, the deeper you go into strategy, the better your chance of winning, and one of the most advanced strategies is called card counting. This is when the player keeps a mental note of what cards have been dealt, in order to have a better idea of what is left in the pack. He can then adjust his strategy accordingly.
There is no rule against card counting, but casinos don’t like it, as when done successfully, it stacks the odds in the player’s favour. Ben Afleck was asked to leave the Hard Rock Casino in Las Vegas after consistently taking the house for large sums of money, and was banned for life. According to witnesses, a security guard sympathised, and told him: “you’re just too good.” Tobey Maguire’s dirty money
It sounds like a plot from one of his movies, but sometimes truth is stranger than fiction. Tobey Maguire is well known for his love of poker, and moves in the same social circles as Ben Affleck. But a lawsuit demanded that he hand over some of his winnings.
According to the lawyers, Maguire was involved in high-stakes games against some unsavoury opponents. One of them was Bradley Ruderman, a con artist who is now serving jail time on a variety of fraud charges. Maguire legitimately won thousands from Ruderman, but the debt was settled using money obtained through fraudulent means. Maguire ultimately settled the case
Almost inevitably, art has now sought to imitate life, and the whole story has been brought to the big screen in the critically acclaimed Molly’s Game
. Paris Hilton ejected from – The Hilton
The socialite and occasional actress is no stranger to the headlines, but being banned from one her own hotels will possibly be remembered as her crowning achievement. It happened at the Las Vegas Hilton, and it was her own father who enforced the ban.
A regular around the gaming tables, the heiress was well-known for placing extravagant bets. However, when she staked her £175,000 Bentley on a game of poker, and then lost it, management and family felt obliged to take action. She was also banned from the luxurious Wynns’s Casino after being caught in possession of drugs, but has since been welcomed back with open arms.